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Newham launches priavte landlord consultation that would protect their tenants

PUBLISHED: 16:09 07 October 2011 | UPDATED: 16:13 07 October 2011

A 10-week consultation into licensing private landlords has been launched by Newham Council which could pave the way for the borough becoming the first to run such a scheme.

After which councillors will consider whether or not to give it the go-ahead.

If approved, Newham could be up and running the running the scheme before the summer.

It would affect one in three of all the borough’s households, protecting an estimated 35,000 private tenancies.

The radical move comes shortly after the council announced the creation of a task force to combat ‘super sheds’, illegal ramshackle buildings built at the bottom of gardens which often house tenants living in appalling squalor.

Infra-red cameras and aerial photography will be used to find them and ensure the landlords are brought to book.

The proposals are backed by national housing charity Shelter which urges other councils to follow Newham’s lead.

The initiative has already been successfully piloted in Little Ilford, Manor Park.

Newham Mayor Sir Robin Wales heralded the scheme as Newham as Newham “leading the country when it comes to tackling bad landlords who flout the law.”

He continued: “We want to ensure that private sector rented properties are well managed and meet a good standard. We also want to deal with the crime and anti-social behaviour that is sometimes associated with bad private sector rented housing.

“There are good landlords in Newham and we want to work with them. Unfortunately there are also some unscrupulous ones – which these proposals would target.”

Kay Boycott, a director at Shelter, said she was delighted with Newham’s proposals to “help protect vulnerable tenants from rogue landlords who are making their tenants’ lives hell.”

Landlords who want to participate should go to: www.ors.org.uk/survey/newham.

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